The Raleigh City Council recently adopted the framework for the Southeast Raleigh Economic Development Strategy, a plan bring the area up to speed with the rest of the Triangle.
James Montague is helping to build Southeast Raleigh's future. He developed a strip mall and is mapping out plans for an office park on Creech Road. After growing up in the area, Montague believes in community reinvestment.
"I don't see the negative part. I see totally positive," he says. "I want to show the children and people in the community you can do something positive."
Planners say residential areas have to be strong before businesses will arrive and bring economic development. Close to 400 homes and town homes are going up in the Neighborhoods at Walnut Creek, and they are selling quickly.
"Once they get in here, I think they see Southeast Raleigh doesn't have to be Southeast Raleigh," says sales executive Treshell Mayo.
Community activist Venita Peyton is selling people on the idea of a brighter future for the area.
"We have been a people left out for the longest period of time. Fortunately, now that's starting to change," she says.
Right now, Peyton is working on plans for a charter middle school, but she says that is only the beginning.
"I'd like to see a mall. I'd like to see a major employment center, and I would like to see more technology operatives in the area," she says.
The city is hiring a private consultant to study development strategies for the area.N.C. State's Centennial Campusis looking at possible partnerships with businesses in Southeast Raleigh.